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 Political campaign: Better Amn or Cormyr?
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Regar Khorvaen
Acolyte

Spain
6 Posts

Posted - 11 Apr 2018 :  07:18:50  Show Profile Send Regar Khorvaen a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
Hello everybody; I'm planning a campaign for a PBEM game. The PCs will be young spoiled noble brats send to the frontier to watch a keep. But soon they discover a conspiration of orc tribes and evil plotters (Zhentarim/Knights of the Shield... No sure still). And when they reach level 7-8, the conspiration strikes and the king is dead. And the political waves reachs every corner, starting a civil war.

First I thought about setting the story in Cormyr. It's a typical monarchy, it's in a well-known place (Heartlands). But then I started reading the Old Lands of Intrigue ad I think Amn has possibilities. It has troubled neighbours (Tethyr and a ogre magi kingdom) and evil conspirations like the NIght Masks.

What do you think?

Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15675 Posts

Posted - 11 Apr 2018 :  08:30:33  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
If you are reading LoI, you might want to go for Erlkazar instead. less well known, but that gives you more freedom, and its made for what you want to do (its one of FR's kingdom that is barely detailed so DM's can "make it their own"). And you can still involve Amn, Tethyr, etc - heck, just about anyone you wanted, its so centralized (including Cormyr, which did indeed extend its borders to the northern edge of the Giant's Plain).

Cormyr's tricky, because it has TONS of history you can trip over, and although its fairly centralized location allows for many subplots, the problems comes in when you don't want a particular subplot (that would make logical sense) to unfold (like the Zhents messing with stuff, or Sembia, etc). Amn is good because of all the dirty-dealing already going on there, but then again, Sembia has all of that as well (although far less detailed than Amn - Sembia was also originally meant to be a kingdom for DM's to flesh-out themselves). So I'd probably choose Sembia over Cormyr, if you wanted to stay in The Heartlands, and I'd choose Erlkazar over Amn, if you wanted it to be a bit more 'Moorish' in flavor (since you are from Spain, I'm assuming you are familiar with your history - You can give an Erlkazar campaign a bit of an 'El Cid' kind of vibe).

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone


Edited by - Markustay on 11 Apr 2018 08:32:30
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Wrigley
Senior Scribe

Czech Republic
459 Posts

Posted - 11 Apr 2018 :  09:39:41  Show Profile  Visit Wrigley's Homepage Send Wrigley a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I would also suggest Sembia as it has already been sent into a civil war you can play out. You would have already prepared main NPCs and organizations but details would be up to you as Sembia is not fleshed out entirely. There is also possibility for you to add Shades into the picture for high level threat.
The premise is Kendric Selkirk is dead and his aunt is fighting his son and most of the council to be a new overmaster.
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Regar Khorvaen
Acolyte

Spain
6 Posts

Posted - 11 Apr 2018 :  18:55:41  Show Profile Send Regar Khorvaen a Private Message  Reply with Quote
THe problem with Sembia is it lacks the political struggles of a monarchy. Perhaps Cormyr has too many data, but Sembia is the oposite. I'm not even sure if it has a president/consul/whatever or is ruled by a council of the fatest merchants.

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Regar Khorvaen
Acolyte

Spain
6 Posts

Posted - 11 Apr 2018 :  19:00:53  Show Profile Send Regar Khorvaen a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Of course Amn has the same problems, but got more details. But Sembia has more interesting cities (described in 2e).

My campaign idea is having the PCs being spoiled brats sent to the Stonelands to watch a tower in the middle of nowhere (near the Helm' Lands). There they would discover a secret route of smuggling dark magic into Cormyr. All is part of a coup organized by the evil group (ZHentarim, Cult of the Dragon, whatever).
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
31300 Posts

Posted - 11 Apr 2018 :  19:34:53  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Regar Khorvaen

Of course Amn has the same problems, but got more details. But Sembia has more interesting cities (described in 2e).

My campaign idea is having the PCs being spoiled brats sent to the Stonelands to watch a tower in the middle of nowhere (near the Helm' Lands). There they would discover a secret route of smuggling dark magic into Cormyr. All is part of a coup organized by the evil group (ZHentarim, Cult of the Dragon, whatever).



Add another layer or several: the bad guys are a local group, maybe greedy nobles or shady merchants. What isn't obvious until the PCs get involved and start seriously looking into it is that this local group is being manipulated by one or more of the larger power groups...

And another group is manipulating the PCs to stop the first group. The group manipulating the PCs could be good guys like the Harpers or Cormyrian Highknights, or it could be an evil group that rivals the other.

So it could be that Lord Greedybottom put together a small cabal to smuggle in dark magic, with the eventual goal of overthrowing the Obarskyrs. But Lord Greedybottom and his cabal are actually being manipulated by the Zhents; they want Cormyrian instability so that Zhent goods can be moved thru the area with less interference.

The PCs find out about Lord Greedybottom and try to stop him; it's only later that they discover Zhent involvement. It takes even more time for the PCs to discover that they were tipped off by the Highknights.

And maybe the Highknights were tipped off by a member of the Twisted Rune; he just wanted one of the magical goodies Lord Greedybottom was bringing in.

For a further complication, one of the members of Lord Greedybottom's cabal is totally loyal to the throne. He's going along with the plot to get info and eventually turn it all over the the Crown. He's inexperienced and young, though, and doesn't really know the best way to get word to the right people -- so he could wind up interfering with the PCs, possibly even thwarting them, in a bungled attempt to do the right thing.

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Regar Khorvaen
Acolyte

Spain
6 Posts

Posted - 11 Apr 2018 :  22:05:21  Show Profile Send Regar Khorvaen a Private Message  Reply with Quote
That are perfectly good ideas.

I think in Cormyr a noble family could be a perfect local oponent (say, the Bleth, they were traitors in the Cormyr novel). WIth help from the Fire Knifes (killer/spies element) and the Iron Throne (finantial baking).

THe Highknights are a generic reference?

So, Rupert, do you prefer Amn or Cormyr?
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Regar Khorvaen
Acolyte

Spain
6 Posts

Posted - 11 Apr 2018 :  22:19:33  Show Profile Send Regar Khorvaen a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Markustay, I would like to play with PCs expectations, and Erlkazar is a bit too unknown. But it was a good idea.
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Markustay
Realms Explorer extraordinaire

USA
15675 Posts

Posted - 11 Apr 2018 :  22:32:58  Show Profile Send Markustay a Private Message  Reply with Quote
In that case, I personally feel Amn would be your safest bet. Of course, if you don't mind navigating the quagmire of Cormyrian history and politics, then go for that. The plot you put forth does lend itself well to Cormyr ('spoiled children of nobles').

Cheers

"I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me" --- Dudley Field Malone

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
31300 Posts

Posted - 12 Apr 2018 :  03:25:09  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Regar Khorvaen

That are perfectly good ideas.

I think in Cormyr a noble family could be a perfect local oponent (say, the Bleth, they were traitors in the Cormyr novel). WIth help from the Fire Knifes (killer/spies element) and the Iron Throne (finantial baking).

THe Highknights are a generic reference?

So, Rupert, do you prefer Amn or Cormyr?



Highknights are the secret agents of Cormyr. They've appeared in a few of Ed's books. They're basically talented individuals, loyal to the Crown and working in secret for the best interests of the Kingdom.

My preference is for Cormyr, but that's biased by the fact I know more about Cormyr than Amn, and I'm a fan of Cormyr, in general.

Cormyr has had a lot more coverage than Amn... To some, this is an advantage: less making things up, for the DM. For others, this would be a disadvantage: less room to make up your own stuff.

My preference is to have more official material, and I think having defined parameters makes me more creative, because I've got to figure out how to make something work without violating those parameters. But I know a lot of other people don't share that particular view. That is very much a YMMV thing (your mileage may vary, meaning that what's awesome for me may not be so great for you). It's all about your preferences, with that choice.

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Lord Karsus
Great Reader

USA
3170 Posts

Posted - 15 Apr 2018 :  20:53:50  Show Profile  Send Lord Karsus an AOL message Send Lord Karsus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
-Amn feels like it fits better for what you were looking to do.

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Brimstone
Great Reader

USA
2998 Posts

Posted - 16 Apr 2018 :  20:14:27  Show Profile Send Brimstone a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Amn would probably be better. Have the Council of Six go to War(Openly or not so openly) against each other.

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